Biel: Veni, Vidit, vici

by Tanmay Srinath
7/30/2019 – He's done it! Vidit Santosh Gujrathi dominated the Biel Chess Festival 2019, winning with a round to spare! On Monday he pressed for 41 moves against Abdusattorov, but decided to take a draw after his tournament victory was assured by Shankland's draw against Bogner. The American was considerably worse out of a Gruenfeld, but his opponent Bogner seemed to be in a peaceful mood, and they ended up splitting the point. Leko took no time in recovering from yesterday's loss, crushing Cori with an elegant exchange sacrifice in the late middlegame. Georgiadis missed a huge chance to put Maghsoodloo under pressure, and had to fight to split the point. | Photo: Simon Bohnenblust / Biel Chess Festival

Powerplay 22: A Repertoire for Black with the French Defence Powerplay 22: A Repertoire for Black with the French Defence

On this DVD Grandmaster Daniel King offers you a repertoire for Black with the French. Based around ten stem games, all White's major lines against the French are covered.

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Vidit secures 1st with a round to spare!

The tournament in Biel is nearly over, and we have a winner before the last round! Vidit Gujarathi played consistent and aggressive chess, and because both he and Shankland drew their games in the sixth round he has an insurmountable four point cushion going into the final day. Shankland, who was in a must win situation, was struggling to create winning chances, but landed in hot water and still managed to somehow escape. Peter Leko struck back immediately, after losing yesterday, by beating Jorge Cori in a classical French to jump back to third with a round to go. Georgiadis and Maghsoodloo drew a crazy Gruenfeld where both sides could have improved their play multiple times.

Leko's played a commendable tournament till now. Can he wrap it up well tomorrow? | Photo: Simon Bohnenblust / Biel Chess Festival

Let's get into the thick of things:

Leko 1-0 Cori

Leko's enormous tournament experience came to the fore today. One felt that the former World Championship runner-up was running out of steam when he had an average Blitz tournament and lost to Maghsoodloo yesterday, but Peter managed to rejuvenate his game by returning to his favourite 1.e4 for his last White game. He then managed to systematically outplay the young Peruvian GM and win. Here are the critical moments:

 

Cori chooses the Classical variation of the French against Leko's 1.e4.

 

This is the main line of the variation. Cori chose 7...e7, a worthy alternative to the main line 7...a6 and 7...cxd4.

 

This is a variation from 12.♕f2. Can you find why 13...f6? is a mistake?

 

Somehow Black's early middlegame play wasn't entirely convincing. After 16.f5! Leko won a pawn by force, and it looked as if Black's attack wasn't that serious.

 

We can now see Leko's idea.

 

The only mistake Leko made in the game — can you find why 26.c3? loses White his advantage?

 

Cori missed his chance and White is now winning, as Black has no compensation for the two missing pawns.

 

37.b4! was amazing judgement from Leko in time trouble. He realised that the endgame that arises by force in a few moves is easily winning for White. What more — the all-powerful engines take a lot of time to appreciate his idea!

 

White's pawns are too fast, and Leko won in a few more moves.

 

Peter has played very confident chess the entire event | Photo : Simon Bohnenblust / Biel Chess Festival

Bogner ½-½ Shankland

When top players want to play for the win, they choose the Gruenfeld against 1.d4. While the opening is universally accepted as one of the soundest ways to get unbalanced positions, recent trends seem to favour White, and Bogner managed to outplay Shankland before peacefully exchanging queens, missing out on a wonderful pseudo queen sacrifice:

 

Bogner took on g7 and the players traded down to a dead drawn rook endgame. Instead, 34.Qe7!! was much better, keeping Black all tied up. Taking the queen loses due to the weak back rank, and after the relatively best 34...Na5 35.h4! h5 36.Qg5 Black is close to lost - it is very hard for him to move.

 

Shankland couldn't win today, but he will be happy he didn't get punished for over-pressing | Photo: Simon Bohnenblust / Biel Chess Festival

Vidit ½-½ Abdusattorov

Vidit chose the Catalan today, and while he got a slight advantage, it was never enough to play for a win. With Shankland struggling in his game, Vidit simplified into a drawn endgame, and split the point on move 41: 

Both players didn't shy away from a battle | Photo : Simon Bohnenblust / Biel Chess Festival

 

Vidit took the game into a risk free endgame where only White can continue to press. He didn't get far enough, and pragmatically decided to split the point and ensure tournament victory.

 

Calm, composed and focused — the new Biel Champion! | Photo: Simon Bohnenblust / Biel Chess Festival

Georgiadis ½-½ Maghsoodloo

This was a fighting game between two players, where Nico missed a big opportunity to get excellent winning chances:

 

It doesn't take much effort to spot that 21.d6! grants White a long term bind. The idea is to meet 21...f6 with 22.♖c7! ♜xc7 23.dxc7 ♜c8 24.♕xa7 with a dominating position. Instead, 21.dxe6?! was too timid, and Nico had to fight in the end to draw.

 

Despite the fact that both players were not fighting for 1st place, they gave it their all! | Photo: Simon Bohnenblust / Biel Chess Festival

Here are the overall standings after round 5:

Rank Name Games Classic Rapid Blitz Total
1 GM Santosh Vidit 27 12 8 11 31
2 GM Sam Shankland 27 8 9 10 27
3 GM Peter Leko 27 8 10 6.5 24.5
  GM Parham Maghsoodloo 27 7 8 9.5 24.5
5 GM Nodirbek Abdusattorov 27 9 5 8 22
  GM Jorge Cori 27 8 7 7 22
7 GM Nico Georgiadis 27 4 6 2 12
8 GM Sebastian Bogner 27 6 3 2 11

With first place decided, the battle for second is fierce. Who will take 2nd and 3rd in the end?

Classical tournament standings

Rk.   Name Rtg. Nt. Pts. n
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
TB Perf.
1
GM
2703
3.5
5
 
   
9.75
2768
2
GM
2598
3.5
6
 
 
9.75
2715
3
GM
2686
3.0
6
 
 
8.50
2655
4
GM
2674
3.0
5
 
 
 
8.25
2680
5
GM
2713
3.0
6
 
 
7.50
2624
6
GM
2656
2.5
6
 
 
7.50
2571
7
GM
2584
2.5
6
 
 
6.50
2601
8
GM
2514
2.0
6
 
 
5.75
2530
TBs: Sonneborn-Berger

All games

 

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Tanmay is a young chess player from Bangalore, Karnataka, currently pursuing both chess and engineering at BMSCE Bangalore. Tanmay is also a Taekwondo Black Belt, who has represented the country in an International Tournament in Thailand. He is a big fan of Mikhail Tal and Vishy Anand, and sincerely believes in doing his bit to Power Chess in India!
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chessbibliophile chessbibliophile 7/31/2019 04:19
I wrote the article first for Chess Mate India Magazine and a shorter version appeared on TheChessWorld web site: https://thechessworld.com/articles/general-information/veni-vidi-vishy-part-i/ Unfortunately, never managed to bring it up to date with the concluding part. As of now ChessBase has enough material on Anand and also a DVD. Back in 1970s, it was the legendary cricketer Vishwanath who was called Vishy. Now it's Anand, though the name refers to his father, Vishwanathan.
Denix Denix 7/30/2019 06:50
hahaha. I'm trying to remember it was Veni, Vidi, Vishy, then Vishy became a World Champion! I will dig when was and where is that article.
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